What to Do in the Garden in November

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Posted on 11/19/2022

November is a cold and chilly month for many gardeners.

Just because the cold has started to set in doesn't mean that you can't still work in the garden or flex your gardening muscles. There are a lot of gardening tasks that you can tackle in the month of November!

If you live in a cold climate, November is the time to start thinking about putting your garden to bed for the winter. This means doing things like covering your delicate plants with mulch or bringing them indoors. You should also start to think about which plants you want to divide and transplant next spring. Do you have spring bulbs that you can divide up before the first frost and get planted out in their new homes?

If you live in a warmer climate, November is still a good month for gardening! You can plant fall vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, and kale. You can also start preparing your garden beds for next spring by adding compost and other amendments.

Here's what you can work on this month in the garden based on your growing zone:

Zones 3 and 4

This is the perfect time to start putting your garden to bed for the winter by covering delicate plants with mulch or bringing them indoors if you haven't already. Plants that are in containers can easily be brought inside and overwintered either in a shed, your garage, or indoors.

Think about which plants you want to divide and transplant in the spring. Do you have perennials that are becoming crowded? If so, divide them up and replant them or store them inside until the spring.

Continue to harvest root vegetables like carrots, beets, and potatoes. You can also plant cover crops in any empty spaces in your garden. Cover crops will help to improve the health of your soil over the winter months, making your next garden even more productive.


SHOP FOR COVER CROPS

Take the time to reflect on how your garden this year went. Write down or note in the From Seed to Spoon app from Park Seed what worked well, what didn't, any problems that you had and new things you tried. In the app, make notes about the varieties of plants, treatments, or methods you used and what the results were. This will help you plan out next year more effectively and improve your garden year after year.

Zones 5 and 6

You can also start putting your garden to bed for the winter by covering delicate plants with mulch or bringing them indoors. Think about which plants you want to divide and transplant in the spring, making note of these plants and where you'd like to relocate the split plants.

Continue to harvest root vegetables like carrots, beets, and potatoes. If needed, you can buy or build cold frames to go over your more delicate garden veggies to extend your growing season. You can also invest in row covers or a hoop house to keep your garden going longer.

You can also plant some cold hardy, fast-growing vegetables like kale or greens this month. These crops will mature from seeds in as little as a month, making them a great option for a short, cold season. You may need to start the seeds indoors and transplant them outside if you're in a particularly cold area.


SHOP FOR FAST GROWING CROPS

Plant cover crops in any empty spaces in your garden. This will help to keep your soil productive and active during the off-season. In the spring, you can till these plants back into the soil for green mulch. Clover, alfalfa, oats, barley, and beans are great cover crops to plant that will work wonders for your soil's nutrient levels.


SHOP FOR COVER CROPS

Start planting spring bulbs! You have some time in this Zone to get some spring bulbs into the ground. Plant bulbs that will bloom early in the spring like daffodils, lilies, and irises.


SHOP FOR BULBS

Zone 7

Continue to harvest root vegetables like carrots, beets, and potatoes. You can also continue to harvest any other crops that are produced in your garden. As the plants die back, remove them and clean up your garden. Either compost the plant remains that you removed or work them into the soil to add nutrients back in. Planting cover crops over any empty garden space is always a great idea.


SHOP FOR COVER CROPS

When your garden is cleaned up and all of the spent plants have been removed, add mulch and soil amendments to the soil.

Zones 8-9

These growing zones have a lengthier season than we've talked about so far. In November, you can continue to plant fall vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, kale, and greens.


SHOP FOR COOL SEASON VEGETABLES

If you haven't yet, this is also a great time to plant garlic. Have your garlic cloves in the ground before the first frost so that you can harvest them in the spring.

Prepare garden beds for next spring by adding compost and other amendments. As you clean up your garden bed, test your soil. This will give you a better idea of amendments to add to your soil to improve it.

You can also plant perennials here this month. Plant spring-blooming bulbs or trees before the first frost. November and the winter months are usually wetter months, which will help your new perennial additions to settle in before the growing season next year.


SHOP FOR PERENNIALS

Zone 10

Although your garden is likely in full swing here, you still want to take the time to do yearly maintenance. Think about which plants you want to divide and transplant in the spring. Do you have plants that are starting to look crowded or develop bald spots because of overcrowding? You can split those up and divide them now. All you need to do this is a spade and a knife.

This is also a good time to test the soil in your garden and flower beds. Amend the soil by adding specific nutrients, compost, and manure. Add a thick layer of mulch on top of your amendments.


LEARN MORE

There are a lot of things that you can plant here this month. You can continue to harvest from your current garden plants and you can continue to add more plants to your garden and flowerbeds.

You can also plant citrus trees this month. Add lime, lemon or orange trees to your landscape to create beautiful, edible focal points.


SHOP FOR CITRUS TREES

Zone 11

This month should be a heavy planting month for you in this zone. Start by cleaning up your garden beds and flowerbeds. Take the time to test and amend your soil properly.

If you're lucky enough to live in this zone, you'll know that the gardening season never really ends here. This month you can focus on planting citrus trees and avocado trees. You can also continue to harvest from any existing trees you might have that bear tropical fruit like bananas, papayas or citrus.


SHOP FOR FRUIT TREES

Regardless of the zone you live in, November is a great time to start preparing your garden for next spring. By adding compost and other amendments to your garden beds, you'll be giving your plants a head start for the growing season. And, of course, don't forget to plant those spring bulbs! With a little bit of preparation now, you'll be able to enjoy a beautiful garden come springtime.


SHOP FOR BULBS

This post was written by Shelby DeVore, the founder of Farminence and the host of the . Shelby is a passionate gardener with 20+ years of experience gardening and growing food at home. She recently moved to north Texas with her husband and three children where she’s excited to explore a new gardening zone and build a new farm.